Belfast City Council to discuss employee COVID response policy, police promotions, MLK Day

Mon, 01/03/2022 - 9:15pm

    BELFAST — The Belfast City Council will hold its regularly scheduled public meeting Tuesday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m. and address an agenda that includes a discussion of the draft of City of Belfast employee COVID-19 response policy, among other topics. The Council will precede the open meeting with two executive sessions, beginning at 6:15 p.m.

    Following instructions from the City Council, on Sept. 23, Belfast City Manager Erin Herbig updated the City’s employee COVID-19 response requirements, with assistance from City Attorney Kristin Collins. 

    “This policy incorporated disciplinary action with our current operating policy at that time. The policy was reviewed with all department heads and our two labor unions, Council 93 AFSCME Local 926-05, and the Belfast Police Association/Fraternal Order of Police, and was shared with all City of Belfast employees,” according to Herbig’s report.

    Information on the City of Belfast’s employee guidelines is available on the City website

    Belfast Fire Chief Patrick Richards will make a request that the City Council confirm Christopher Kulbe as deputy fire chief. Kulbe was selected from a pool of applicants after the position was posted Oct. 6. 

    Kulbe is a Maine State certified firefighter I and II, fire officer I, and a Maine EMS license paramedic, according to Herbig’s report. Kulbe has reportedly served as a firefighter and EMT for 15 years, 13 of which were spent working for the City of Bangor. 

    Belfast Police Chief Gerry Lincoln is also listed on the agenda. Lincoln is requesting that the Council confirm Detective Sergeant Matthew Cook as patrol sergeant for Belfast PD. Cook has worked with Belfast Police since 2010 and was promoted to patrol sergeant in 2014, serving until selected to be detective sergeant in 2018. It is noted in the report that a recent opening in the department has motivated Cook to return to supervising our patrol officers for many reasons, including working well with his family. 

    BPD Sergeant Daniel Fitzpatrick has been chosen to fill the role of detective sergeant, with confirmation of the move requested of the council.

    Fitzpatrick was hired by Belfast PD in 2008, before being promoted to patrol sergeant in 2014, where he has reportedly served well until the present. Sgt. Fitzpatrick is currently a senior officer in the department serving as a field training officer and mentor to many of the younger officers in the department, it is noted in Herbig’s report. 

    The recent launch of the online permitting portal by the City of Belfast Code and Planning Department is also featured on the agenda, with a presentation from the director of the group scheduled. The portal can be found by visiting the City website, under the Planning and Codes Department homepage. 

    The new permitting software will reportedly allow the Code Department to accept a variety of permit applications online, including internal plumbing, electrical, sewer connection, and driveway/entrance, among others. 

    A facility use application by the MLK Day Committee for the Martin Luther King Day Celebration in front of the First Church on Monday, Jan. 17, from 4:40-5:30 p.m. A facility use application for the All Roads Music Festival in front of the First Church the same day, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

    Belfast City Council meets on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. Meetings are conducted online using Zoom and can be streamed on the City of Belfast website. They also air live on BEL TV and on Belfast Community Radio at WBFY 100.9. 

    Comments can also be submitted by emailing the Council during the Jan. 4 meeting. Comments will be presented to the Council.

    An oral comment can also be submitted during the meeting via Zoom webinar. Information for this method can be found on the City website.

    Information and documents related to this meeting are available on the City’s website

    Erica Thoms can be reached at